FREEPORT — Freeport’s boys’ soccer team keeps creeping closer, but the Falcons still can’t find a way to beat rival Yarmouth.

Wednesday afternoon, Freeport held a one-goal lead with 10 minutes to play, but the two-time reigning Class B state champion Clippers rallied on goals from Zach Turkel and Justin Dawes for a 2-1 victory.

Yarmouth improved to 1-0-1 stayed undefeated this century against its neighbor, which is 0-1-1.

“Our goal is to be playing our best in October and November, but today our effort was good,” said longtime Yarmouth Coach Mike Hagerty, who has never lost to Freeport in his 26 seasons. “I think we have a high ceiling this year. We’ll get a lot better.”

Freeport had the better of play in the first half, taking six corner kicks and outshooting the Clippers, but the Falcons couldn’t convert and the game was scoreless at the break.

The Falcons went on top with 26:48 to play when Kaiden Jacobs one-timed a left-footed blast past Yarmouth goalkeeper Ian O’Connor (six saves). The goal was set up by Israel Bossay’s cross.


Freeport held off the Clippers until the 71st minute, when Dawes got the ball to Turkel, who shot past diving keeper Rowan Bradford (four saves).

“The ball got flicked over, I faked on my right and (the goalie) fell for it, luckily, and I just slotted (the ball) bottom left,” said Turkel.

With overtime looming, Yarmouth struck again with 4:26 remaining. After a long throw-in by Liam Hickey, Stevie Walsh crossed to Dawes, who banged it home.

“I was the target on the throw, but the ball went way over me. Then Stevie does what he does, he flicked it front post, and I was just there with the tap-in,” said Dawes.

“We do better when we’re shown adversity, and getting some momentum going fired us up.”

Freeport had one last chance, but Tristan Hatton’s long bid was saved by O’Connor.


“We knew we just had to keep playing,” said Hickey, a captain. “We had some close calls and we had to keep working and keep fighting. No panic. We got two in the end there.”

“Our kids just have a lot of pride in the weight room, and I feel that physical strength builds mental toughness as well,” Hagerty added. “We got down, but that’s OK. We knew we were going to play better.”

The Falcons, who lost in overtime to Yarmouth in last year’s regional semifinals, lamented the outcome but were encouraged nevertheless.

“I’m really pleased with the heart my team showed here,” said Freeport Coach Bob Strong. “Yarmouth’s a great team and we’ll see them at least one more time.

“I honestly think (Yarmouth) appeared to be in better physical shape in the last 10 minutes. We had some trouble keeping up.”

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